How to choose the perfect bathroom basin taps in a few easy steps
When fitting out a new or revamped bathroom, taps can make a huge difference to the finished look. Here are the easy steps you nee to take to choose the perfect bathroom basin taps.
One, two or three holes?
First up, look at your basin – the number of holes it has to take fittings will guide your choices.
If you have one hole, you can go for either a single-lever tap or a monobloc. A single-lever tap controls the temperature from side to side and volume forward and back. A monobloc – as the name suggests – has one unit with a spout and two handles or taps. The monobloc gives you a finer control over temperature.
With two holes for fittings, you’ll need pillar taps – your basic hot and cold taps – plain and simple. Pillar taps can be turned on and off with knobs, cross-shaped handles or levers.
If you have three pre-drilled holes, that’s two taps and a spout. Your spout can be closed or a waterfall style, open at the top – definitely a more modern look.
Contemporary bathroom fittings sometimes offer a fourth kind – deck or wall mounted. The taps and spout are separate from the basin, allowing for circular or other minimalist basin shapes.
If you go down this road, you need to choose a spout that extends far enough over the basin to make it comfortable to use. Also make sure that with any deck mounted taps, there is enough room between the basin and the wall for fitting them.
Basin tap finishes
Once you have narrowed down your style of tap, you can choose the finish. These include chrome, brass, gold, nickel, copper and black, so there’s something for every taste and budget.
Bear in mind that even the cheapest bathroom suite can be made to look far more fancy than it really is with elegant well-designed taps.
Washers and maintenance
When you’re choosing your bathroom basin taps, you’ll notice that most use a ceramic disc cartridge rather than traditional rubber washers. This is good news! The disc system means you won’t have to change washers or have leaky taps virtually ever and you only have to move the tap a quarter turn to stop it. However, ceramic disks can scratch in hard water areas. Bear in mind a water softener!
Rubber washers seal to a brass seat and can harden or squash over time. They usually need changing every 5 years. Also the brass seat can ‘pit’ and scratch meaning you’ll need to re-seat them by wearing back the brass to a new shiny face. Here’s a video on how to do it here: